The Key for Holding a Successful ELT Conference: Some Nuts and Bolts

Document Type : Original Article


Urmia University, Iran


Conferences are gatherings that attract attendants from various places and serve both academic and social purposes. Organizing an international conference is, accordingly, a very challenging, demanding and time-consuming task. In order for the conference organizers to hold a successful conference, there is a need for a comprehensive guide to use as a departure and reference point. No academic paper seems to have attended to do's and don'ts of organizing a successful conference in ELT/Applied linguistics. Drawing on the very positive evaluation of a recent international ELT conference held in Urmia, Iran, in May 2013, the authors (as the academic and executive organizers of this conference) share, in this paper, their experiences in holding what was viewed as a 'mammoth success' and a 'magnificent conference' by the attendants ( The paper discusses conference organizing tasks in terms of two major categories: academic and executive, each with different phases and sub-activities. The paper is hoped to provide a resourceful piece of first-hand information to conference, especially first-time, organizers in the field of ELT and related disciplines.